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Submitted: 04-23-2014 by JB
Overall, the Ascend D10 is a great beginner/intermediate kayak. I've never been in a Pungo, Dagger, or Prodigy or any of the higher end popular models, so I can't compare it to those, but the Ascend is a great kayak for $400. Tracks very well, is relatively fast, is stable, and light enough to easily hoist in/out of the bed of a truck. I've been on lakes with it and it tends to turn to the right a bit if you stop paddling, but it doesn't stop like an anchor as I've seen in plenty of other similar models. I generally use it on slow to moderate flowing streams in Michigan. Usually a lot of bends on the rivers I paddle, and a lot of timber in the water that creates challenges. This kayak turns on a dime and can move quickly on long straight reaches.
Seat is well made and comfortable. It feels like you sit low in the water, but I'm still amazed when it glides over shallow waters that I expected to bottom out on. I'm 5'11 and 185 lbs - I've been over water that is less than 1 feet deep plenty of times without issue.
I researched most top models before purchasing this kayak. For the money, it's excellent. If you have $700 to spend, definitely try out one of the higher-end models mentioned above, but also give this one a trial run. It's great for not only slow moving rivers, but lakes as well.
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